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Compassion Focused SIG

Compassion Focused Special Interest Group

Affiliated 2013

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Contact Information

Laura SIlberstein-Tirch, Psy.D.
Clinical Psychologist, The Center for Mindfulness and Compassion Focused Therapy
New York, NY, USA

SIG Leaders

Laura Silberstein-Tirch, co-chair
Dennis Tirch, co-chair 
Russell Kolts, co-chair 

Description of Interest Area

The main focus of this SIG parallels the ACBS mission statement in that it is dedicated to the advancement of compassion focused science and practice so as to alleviate human suffering and advance human well being. It is clear that the Contextual Behavioral Science movement, functional contextualist philosophy, RFT research and ACT and FAP clinical applications all can expand and refine our science of compassion. The account of perspective taking, empathy and compassion that continues to evolve within the CBS community can allow us to understand compassion with increasing clarity, which allows us to frame scientific, testable questions. This can allow us to develop more effective ways to shape and train compassion and compassion in the context of therapy. Beyond this, the idea of applying CBS and EvoS principles to the creation of more functional and compassionate groups and societies continues to grow within the ACBS community.

SIG Mission

To promote the alleviation of human suffering through the continued scientific investigation, understanding and application of compassion via:

1. Creating an accepting, active, values based compassion focused group of “researchers, educators, and practitioners who will work in a collegial, open, self-critical, non-discriminatory, and mutually supportive way that is effective in producing valued outcomes”.
2. Helping to identify researchers and others who have a specific interest in the scientific study of compassion and its underlying processes, and facilitate communication and interchange between them, while balancing “practical application and empirical knowledge.”
3. Supporting research and teaching of the compassion focused approaches to human difficulties with the continued use and “development of basic principles, workable applied theories linked to these principles, effective applied technologies based on these theories, and successful means of training and disseminating these developments, guided by the best available scientific evidence”
4. Facilitating open discussion on how to further promote a compassionate focus in many domains of the ACBS community and further dissemination and training by conducting workshops, research and sponsored talks about compassion focused research and therapy.

Description of SIG membership 

In the interest of fostering inclusion, as a part of the values of ACBS, this is SIG open to any ACBS members, including students, researchers, clinicians, scientists and trainers.

SIG Activities

Business meeting at annual World Conference, sponsor sessions or posters at annual World Conference, listserv, Facebook group, and the SIG Resources webpage.

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